A certain pool of Arlingtonians follow the continuing feats of super swimmer Torri Huske, silver medalist in the 2021 pandemic-postponed Olympics while just out of high school.
Her records in the butterfly and relays remain posted at the Yorktown Aquatic Center, the Yorktown High School Hall of Fame and Inspiration and, most recently, in the hallway exhibit on the school’s all-time top athletes.
The rest of you should know that the Stanford University competitor now finishing sophomore year continues to astonish, which I can confirm via trade publications, her proud father’s reporting, and a chat with Huske herself.
As a teenager, Huske became the U.S. record-holder in the 100m butterfly before becoming U.S. Olympic Trials champion in 2021. That was after garnering six medals in the 2019 Budapest World Junior championships and claiming the title of U.S. Winter Open National Champion. All-American honors also came from the national swim associations, state competitions and top rankings by USA Today and the Washington Post.
So how have things been going at Stanford? Her freshman year—a time of adjustments for any youth—Huske won her first individual Pac-12 title in February 2022, winning the 200 individual medley. By season’s end, she’d become national champion in the 800 freestyle relay, Pac-12 champion in seven events, and seven-time All-American.
Hardly beginner’s luck.
Last June, she represented the U.S. in the Fina Swimming World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, swimming against competitors from 185 countries. While the Americans shattered past records by taking home 41 medals, Huske swam the most races, with 16. She won three gold and three bronze medals while setting two U.S. records. Add in the second round of the Fina World Meet, at which Huske won the most of all competitors, 13 medals, while setting two world records and six American ones.
This March 15-18, in Knoxville, Tenn., she competed in the NCAA championships. Her father Jim says Torri swam against the fastest college swimmers in the Pac-12 Conference Championships. As a team, the Cardinals won by more than 350 points over second-place Southern Cal. But Torri experienced defeat in this “cruel sport,” her father says. Though she swam her personal best in 200 individual medley, butterfly and freestyle, “Torri swam great, it is just that the competition in her events did amazingly well and swam even faster.”
“The No. 1 thing I have to remember is perspective,” she told Swimming World. “I have to compare myself to myself. I am dropping time, and that is what is most important in knowing my training is paying off. I am happy I am still improving.”
With the season finished, Huske, considering a major in mechanical engineering, is readying to travel to Indianapolis June 27-Aug. 1 for the Phillips 66 National Championships, the qualifying event for the World Aquatics (new name for FINA). She’s not guaranteed to qualify, but her father, surprisingly, is hopeful.
Does her hometown enter her thoughts? “The thing I miss the most about Arlington is the people,” Huske told me via email. “The community helped me achieve so much in all aspects of my life. I learned much from the people around me, and I’m thankful for the friends I made at Yorktown and the Arlington Aquatic Club. I’m so appreciative of my teachers at Yorktown. Even though college is a huge challenge, they prepared me well for it.”
Who among my childhood pals knew that the actress from TV’s ghoul comedy “The Munsters” was an Arlingtonian?
Brought to light recently by the faithful on Facebook’s “I Grew Up in Arlington, Va.” group, Pat Priest, who was the second incarnation of the sexy Marilyn Munster (a 1964-66 imitator of “The Addams Family”), graduated from Washington-Lee (now Liberty) High in 1954. The performer, who sang on local 1950s WTTG programs (and whose mother was U.S. Treasurer Ivy Baker Priest) went onto other television roles.
The W-L alumni website confirms Priest’s address in Eagle, Idaho, where, now 86, she’s reported by an entertainment database to have sold real estate.